Online shopping is all the rage and it has been for a long time. Well before the pandemic hit us, two and a half years ago, consumers from all walks of life utilized the internet as their shopping mall. It’s much easier to hop from one site to the next than to visit various stores in person. So what makes on online shopper choose one e-commerce site over the other? In many cases, it comes down to shipping costs.
Let’s take a look at why it’s worthwhile to offer free shipping to online shoppers.
It serves as an excellent marketing tool.
“We offer free shipping!” should be an automatic part of every advertising campaign your company launches. In many cases, it will mean the difference between a customer visiting your online store and ignoring it altogether. As the U.K.’s Accountancy Cloud points out, free shipping can be used to provide a ‘nudge’ to your customers.
“Setting the free shipping basket amount at just the right point above your average order can mean increased sales,” says their website, “Your customers now have an incentive to purchase that one item extra or add in something they didn’t even know they needed…just to get that free shipping perk for their overall total order.”
It helps to prevent cart abandonment.
How many times have you abandoned carts in online stores? In our last blog, we suggested that e-retailers should, at the very least, offer flat rates for shipping. That way, customers don’t get surprised with large shipping costs during the checkout process. Many online shoppers leave online stores without completing their purchases when they see their total costs reaching amounts far greater than they originally assumed.
“Shipping charges is considered as one of the most cited reason for shopping cart abandonment,” informs Chris Wilson of i95Dev, “According to a Wharton study, 61% of consumers are at “somewhat likely” to cancel their purchase if free shipping is not offered. According to a comScore survey, 55% of online shoppers are likelier to abandon shopping carts that don’t offer free shipping.”
It gives you a competitive advantage.
Even though the majority of consumers either expect or want free shipping from online stores, not every e-commerce site offers it. By ensuring that your site’s visitors will be pleased with your offer of free shipping, you give your brand a competitive advantage. As Accountancy Cloud reminds us, every interaction matters when it comes to customer experiences.
“Companies that recognize that their customers care about shipping, and then do something to help create a smoother checkout process are creating a better customer experience, all other things being equal,” contends their website, “This gives them a distinct advantage in the marketplace and has the added benefit of increasing their brand recognition at the same time.”
Do you allow your customers to make online purchases?
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